Open Access Thesis
Baseball is a reflection of America (Briley, 1992). The game is immersed in traditions. Many of these traditions are gendered. Baseball is built on myth, and thesemyths have served the purpose of keeping baseball white, heterosexual, and male. Baseball is also characteristic of enduring inequalities and discrimination. Sixty years after Jackie Robinson integrated Major League Baseball, owners, managers, coaches, CEOs, and fans are still overwhelmingly white and male (Chang, 2017; Lapchick, 2019). Although the participation of girls in baseball can be traced back to the beginnings of the game, they have faced persistent opposition. According to Batts Maddox (2019), “Choosing to play baseball – not softball – disrupts dominant conceptions of acceptable feminine sporting activity,” (p. 9). Baseball is a way for boys and men to prove their masculinity. What does this mean for girls who play baseball? If baseball is emblematic of America, what does the exclusion of girls and women from the “national pastime”reveal about American culture? The purpose of this study was to discover the essence of the experience of girls playing the male-dominated game of baseball. Through these narratives four themes emerged: complexities and intersections of the different identities of girls, “otherness” as the only girl on the team; a small circle of support, and resiliency despite enormous pressure.
Year of Submission
Master of Arts
Department of Health, Recreation, and Community Services
Kathleen G. Scholl, Chair
1 PDF (viii, 146 pages)
©2020 AJ Richardson
Richard, AJ, ""I was a trailblazer": A phenomenological study of the baseball playing experience of girls" (2020). Dissertations and Theses @ UNI. 1070.